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Good Electronics--International Network on Human Rights and Sustainability in Electronics
In the electronics industry there is still a lot to improve...On human rights and sustainable production. Poor working conditions and environmental damage can be found in the production of computers, mobile phones and other electronic products. The complicated product chain, high percentage of outsourcing, rapid product developments, weak unionized structures and lack of (inter)national law implementation contribute to this situation. The industry took the initiative to develop a sector code and working group for implementation. However stakeholders identify weaknesses in the code and its' implementation. Structural involvement of workers and local stakeholders in the code's development, implementation and independent verification has been lacking.

[Video] Trabajadores de Foxconn en Guadalajara, Junio 10, 2010
Cereal y trabajadores de Foxconn en Guadalajara se solidarizan con los trabajadores de Foxconn en China. El equipo de trabajo en la ciudad de Guadalajara, el Centro de Reflexión y Acción laboral (CEREAL Gdl) comenzó a documentar casos provenientes de la industria electrónica en 1997 y a partir de entonces encontró situaciones de acoso sexual, trato indigno, inestabilidad laboral, exposición a tóxicos, represión a la libertad sindical, sobrecargas de trabajo, accidentes colectivos y enfermedades laborales no atendidas.

Foxconn anuncia otra subida salarial tras la ola de suicidios (Pekín - 07/06/2010)
La fabricante del iPad de Apple aumentará un 66% los sueldos en sus plantas del sur de China desde octubre. La firma taiwanesa Foxconn, fabricante del iPad de Apple y envuelta en una ola de suicidios de sus empleados, anunció una subida del sueldo del 66% a los trabajadores de sus líneas de ensamblaje, pocos días después de que se anunciara otro aumento salarial similar, informó hoy la agencia oficial Xinhua. El aumento dejará el sueldo de esos trabajadores en 2.000 yuanes (unos 245 euros) en las plantas de Shenzhen (sur de China), pero no será efectivo hasta el 1 de octubre, destacó la agencia oficial. Se trata del segundo anuncio de aumento de sueldos ofrecido por Foxconn en menos de una semana, después de que el pasado día 2 se anunciara una subida del 30% en el salario de los trabajadores de Shenzhen (donde trabajan 400.000 de los 800.000 empleados chinos de la compañía) a partir de este mes. Las subidas llegan después de que 10 empleados de la empresa en esta zona se hayan suicidado y otros tres hayan resultado heridos al intentar quitarse la vida en lo que va de año.

Las huelgas sacuden la fábrica del mundo (Pekín 11/06/2010)
Una oleada de paros en demanda de mejores salarios y condiciones laborales agita el este de China
¿Es el fin de una época dorada? Una ola de huelgas para pedir subidas salariales y mejores condiciones de trabajo se ha extendido en los últimos días por empresas extranjeras en diferentes provincias de China, en un movimiento que ha llevado a analistas e inversores a interrogarse sobre la continuidad del país asiático como fábrica del mundo. Las movilizaciones, que han afectado a compañías como la automovilística japonesa Honda, se han encadenado debido a lo que parece un efecto dominó tras las subidas de sueldos llevadas a cabo en otras empresas en las que se han registrado paros reivindicativos. Las protestas se han multiplicado después de que la taiwanesa Foxcom incrementara un 67% el salario de sus varios cientos de miles de trabajadores en China y una de las filiales de Honda lo subiera un 24% para poner fin a una huelga. Foxcom, que fabrica los teléfonos iPhone y las tabletas iPad de Apple, reaccionó de esta forma al escándalo surgido tras el suicido de 11 de sus empleados ?10 de ellos, en la ciudad sureña de Shenzhen?, según activistas laborales por las duras condiciones de vida en sus factorías.

Create humane labor standards at Foxconn and end “stealth manufacturing” in Information Technology! (June 8, 2010)
The tragic series of suicides among young workers of the “Foxconn City” factory compound in Shenzhen, China, has alarmed the world. Until now, only few people knew that this is the largest electronics factory in the world, employing more than 300,000 workers. The factory is run by a large multinational company from Taiwan, Foxconn (a subsidiary of Hon Hai group), which is one of the largest electronics manufacturing companies in the world. It produces for the most famous brand names in the global IT industry such as Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Nokia or Sony. Since contract manufacturers like Foxconn and their global customers try to keep their manufacturing operations hidden, this system has correctly been labelled “stealth manufacturing”.

Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM)
SACOM is a new nonprofit organization founded in Hong Kong in June 2005. SACOM originated from a students’ movement devoted to improving the labor conditions of cleaning workers and security guards under the outsourcing policy. The movement attained relative success and created an opportunity for students to engage in local and global labor issues. SACOM aims at bringing concerned students, scholars, labor activists, and consumers together to monitor corporate behavior and to advocate for workers’ rights. We believe that the most effective means of monitoring is to collaborate closely with workers at the workplace level. We team up with labor NGOs to provide in-factory training to workers in South China. Through democratic elections, we support worker-based committees that can represent the voices of the majority of workers.

Foxconn: prolonged protests and clear proposals (08 June 2010)
Trade unions, individual consumers, labour groups, campaign organisations, academics etc. from all over the world have joined in the protest to condemn the suicidal regime at Foxconn's Chinese production sites and the still inadequate responses of the global electronics industry so far. Over the recent months, the Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn has witnessed a series of suicides at it's Longhua plant near Shenzhen in mainland China. June 7, a Foxconn-employed engineer collapsed and died after having worked for 34 hours non-stop. The company has been addressed and criticised for its harsh working regime, heavy work load, overtime, low wages, and the lack of democratically elected workers representatives. The Hong Kong based labour rights group SACOM has been ardently working to raise international awareness. SACOM's four main demands in a nutshell: Review of the management methods at Foxconn to ease the pressure on workers; Facilitate the formation of a trade union through a democratic election; Reform the purchasing model to end the “race to the bottom” game; and Provide a decent wage so that workers need not endanger themselves by working so much overtime. On June 8th, while Apple launches its 4th generation iPhone, labour activists worldwide are commemorating the workers who committed suicide at the Foxconn factory in Shenzen. Protest are staged at the Hon Hai / Foxconn headquarters in Taipei, Taiwan, at the occasion of the company´s annual general meeting.

Under pressure, Foxconn has announced a salary increase of 70%. This increase is welcomed by labour activists, but the announcement is still surrounded by many questions. Reportedly, the increase will be effective from October 1st, 2010. It is not clear if the announced increase will cover all 300.000 workers at the Longhua plant. Foxconn mentioned that workers will have to pass a three-month review period before they are qualified for the October raise. The wage increase is not the result of negotiations between the Foxconn manmagement and representatives of the Longhua workers, but was unilaterally announced by the company. The most painful element of this announced wage increase if of course that it came about only after the tragic deaths of 11 workers. "While overtime work was always voluntary, this wage increase will reduce overtime work as a personal necessity," the Foxconn statement reportedly said.This is a telling remark, as it implicitly means that in the current situation wages are indeed too low to allow for a decent living. Moreover, as SACOM also points out, workers in China do not enjoy effective protection from getting fired if they'd refuse overtime.

Dying young: the Foxconn suicides and China’s booming economy (27 May 2010)
A newly-installed safety net between dormitory buildings to prevent employees from attempting suicide by jumping off the rooftop - can it really help save lives? Since the beginning of 2010, a startling ten Foxconn employees in Shenzhen tried to end their lives. Eight died, while two survived their injuries. All were between 18 and 25 years old—in the prime of their youth—and their loss should awaken wider society to reflect upon the costs of a development model that sacrifices dignity for economic growth. Chinese migrants as low-paid workers and secondary citizens. More than 10 percent of the 1.4 billion people in China, that is, hundreds of millions of “peasants” from the countryside, are on the move. These internal migrants are hailed as China’s new working class. They are preferred as a low cost source of labor and considered better fit for training and adaption to the competitive pressures of the market. In contrast to older state-owned-enterprise workers who seem hopelessly stuck in their socialist mentality and welfare dependency, new generations of peasants-turned-workers are said to be building China’s modernization.

Maquiladoras Electrónicas en Corea y el cáncer
Petition Calling on Samsung to Accept Responsibility for Occupational Deaths and to Provide Safe and Decent Working Conditions (Feb 28, 2010)
The families and friends of electronics manufacturing workers at Samsung in Korea have discovered a cancer cluster among young workers exposed to toxic chemicals. The pattern of cancer deaths bears a striking resemblance to the pattern of cancer deaths among IBM “chip” workers in the US* and to other electronics cancer clusters around the world. March 6th is the third anniversary of the death of Yu-mi Hwang, a Samsung semiconductor factory worker, who died from leukemia at age 22. Her death – and similar coworker deaths - has motivated people to demand that Samsung. Go to the petition:

Mortality among US employees of a large computer manufacturing company: 1969–2001
Previous studies suggested increased cancer incidence and mortality in workers exposed to solvents and other chemicals in computer manufacturing jobs. Most previous studies were of small cohorts and findings were inconsistent. A lawsuit involving a large U.S. company produced a data file for analysis. This study sought to elucidate patterns of mortality in workers who were engaged manufacturing computers and related electronic components in the largest database available to date.

LabourStart: Where trade unionists start their day on the net. LabourStart is an online news service maintained by a global network of volunteers which aims to serve the international trade union movement by collecting and disseminating information -- and by assisting unions in campaigning and other ways. Its features include daily labour news links in more than 20 languages and a news syndication service used by more than over 700 trade union websites. News is collected from mainstream, trade union, and alternative news sources by a network of over 500 volunteer correspondents based on every continent. LabourStart has been involved in online campaigning for several years but moved up a gear with the launch in July 2002 of the ActNOW campaigning system. Tens of thousands of trade unionists have participated in its various online campaigns and more than 50,000 are currently subscribed to its mailing list. They receive weekly mailings, usually on Thursdays.

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